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Nacer Bouhanni shares examples of racist abuse he's received on social media

Joe Robinson
6 Apr 2021

Sprinter targeted with vile abuse following racing incident at Cholet-Pays de la Loire last week

Arkea-Samsic rider Nacer Bouhanni shared a torrent of racist abuse aimed at him on social media after his relegation at the Cholet-Pays de la Loire one-day race last week.

The sprinter was disqualified after a racing incident in the final few hundred metres of the race that saw him push Groupama-FDJ rider Jake Stewart into the barriers.

Following the incident, many took to social media to express their opinion on the incident and criticise Bouhanni for his actions. Beyond that, Bouhanni has been subjected to a wave of racist abuse following the incident with the 30-year-old posting multiple examples of the abuse to his Instagram page on Monday.

On his social media, Bouhanni wrote: 'Hello to all the little jokers who have been amusing themselves for a week by writing to me personally or commenting on certain cycling websites that I should return to Africa, that I am a criminal, that I am a North African who needs to be interned and who are constantly sending me [pig emoji].

'Know that I was born in France and that I am going to file a complaint, because I have been putting up with this for a long time already and I’ve kept silent, but this time I won’t let it go anymore.'

Following the statement, Bouhanni shared several examples of racist abuse in multiple languages. 

Since posting to social media, Bouhanni spoke to French newspaper L'Equipe where he described the racist abuse getting to such an extent that he deactivated his Facebook account and decided to pursue legal action against the worst examples of abuse.

'I'm still not the only one who sees what's going on on social media. Why does nobody do anything when these kind of filthy people are constantly sending me "pigs" or "terrorists",' said Bouhanni to L'Equipe.

'It's like a scar that is closed. It reopened little by little over the days, and that's what hurts. I was born in France, I love my country, I was champion of France at 21, it was one of the most beautiful moments of my career when I was on the podium with La Marseillaise.'

In support of Bouhanni, his Arkea-Samsic team released a short statement in solidarity with its rider.

'Nacer Bouhanni has suffered violent racist attacks for more than a week, especially on social networks. He decided to file a complaint. The Arkea-Samsic team strongly deplores and denounces these acts of racism and gives its full support to Nacer Bouhanni.'

Beyond the team, other riders including teammates of Bouhanni, such as Warren Barguil and Diego Rosa, as well as Kevin Reza have voiced solidarity and support. As of Tuesday morning, Bouhanni's former team Groupama-FDJ, the Cyclistes Professionnels Associes riders' union and UCI were yet to comment publicly on the matter.

Groupama-FDJ rider Stewart tweeted about the abuse Bouhanni has been subject to on Tuesday, condemning the abuse, offering his support to Bouhanni. 

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